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Andre Braugher has such an expressive voice, he was perfect for this rollicking, swashbuckling story. You could imagine hearing it by candlelight in an old tavern somewhere. Lots of fun.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful
This book is super fun. It's fast paced, light, smart and seamlessly crafted. Gentlemen Of The Road reminds me what it was like when I was a little kid bookworm, devouring trashy paperback adventures from cover to cover.
As a child, old pulp serials were the best thing ever. John Carter, Conan, Tarzan - these books whisked me through their pages with knuckle biting adventure - but somehow you always knew the hero would come out on top, despite his (always his) nagging personal doubts, and the overwhelming odds. The simple characters, and almost familiar plots set in exotic locations thrilled me.
Revisiting the novels as an adult, the experience soured. I found them tedious, xenophobic, sexist, and full of horrid cliches. Truly one of those sad moments of lost innocence.
However, this book captures everything my itty-bitty self adored in those old adventures. Chabon perfectly reinvents the flare and simplicity of bold men and women, clever rapscallions, and cruel villains - all dueling in another time and place. And it ditches all the anachronistic manure found in the old pulps. And it's beautifully written, with a voice that effortlessly glides the reader across the exotic locale and fast paced action.
Pros and cons of the audio version: while the audiobook loses the great spot illustrations of the printed edition, it makes up for that with Andre Braugher's reading. His pacing and the texture of his voice perfectly enhances this story.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Chabon's novel is highly imaginative, engaging, and thrilling. it's a short novel of historical fiction with a simple but extremely interesting setting, and a fairly standard "quest" premise.
Braugher's narration, however, is very difficult to listen to without drifting off or losing focus. I have a physical copy of the book as well as the audio, and I found myself turning the audio off a lot and just reading the old-fashioned way.